First Friday-Perfection in Manteo
Combining perfect summertime evening temperatures with great music, the August 2016 First Friday in downtown Manteo may have been the best of the summer.
First Fridays are always great affairs—the Dare County Arts Council (DCAC) uses the monthly celebration of small-town life as a kickoff of their latest artist show; restaurants open up on sidewalks; around every corner it seems there’s the fresh sound of live music.
But this one seemed just a little bit different, a little bit more alive than almost anything in the past.
Maybe it was the music this time. The DCAC always sponsors musicians to perform on the steps of their Gallery, the old Dare County Courthouse, and for August, it was Mojo Collins and Triple Vision . . . and they were smokin’.
Mojo Collins and Triple vision wasn’t the only great music Friday evening. Nu-Blu was on hand, thanks to Cory Hemilright and Bluegrass Island. Nu-Blu, with their tight arrangements, powerful vocals from Carolyn Routh and outstanding musicianship from the group takes even standard bluegrass fare to another level.
The streets were filled with people out for the evening. On either corner of the DCAC Gallery it was apparent this was an election year—Democrats and Republican had set up information tables, soliciting votes and handing out pamphlets.
Inside the DCAC Gallery there was a remarkable show underway featuring three of the most respected artists on the Outer Banks.
Shirley Ruff, known for her whimsical treatments of wooden doors, took her vision to new levels displaying a complexity and vision that is not typical of her creations.
Fay Edwards, Program Director for the DCAC, has a long and successful history of success in the world of art. Her paintings, often done in softer hues with a single focus subject are though provoking and have won a number of awards. For the show, she was working in mixed media, most of her work smaller framed with brilliant colors and great composition.
The founder of the KDH Cooperative, Julie Moye is known for her collages integrated into other pieces of art. The work she displayed at First Friday was as good as anything she has done.
The combination of great music, wonderful art and near perfect summer weather seemed to blend seamlessly for the August 2016 First Friday. We’ll hope for the best on September 2, the next First Friday.